Newsletter 7 – May 2012





Einat Albin & Virginia Mantouvalou, ‘The ILO Convention on Domestic Workers: From the Shadows to the Light’ (2012) 41 Industrial Law Journal 67


Rory O’Connell ‘The Right to Work in the European Convention on Human Rights’ [2012] 2 European Human Rights Law Review 176-190


Justin Pobjoy & Sarah Spencer, ‘Equality for All? The Relationship between Immigration Status and the Allocation of Rights in the United Kingdom’ [2012] 2 European Human Rights Law Review160-175

Working paper available at:


Paul Hunt & other members of the Working Group on the MDGs and Human Rights for the UN Secretary General’s Global Strategy for Women and Children’s Health, ‘The Millennium Development Goals and Human Rights: Realizing Shared Commitments’ (2012) 34(1) Human Rights Quarterly 141-177


Alice Donald & Elizabeth Mottershaw, ‘Limits and Achievements of the Human Rights Act from the Socio-economic Point of View: the HRA, Poverty and Social Exclusion’ in N. Kang-Riou, J. Milner and S. Nayak (eds.) Confronting the Human Rights Act 1998: Contemporary themes and perspectives (Abingdon: Routledge, 2012)


SSRN papers


Virginia Mantouvalou, ‘Are Labour Rights Human Rights?’,:




‘The European Social Charter 50 Years On: Commitment, Interpretation and Compliance’,

Date: 10 May 2012, 13:45-17:45

Organisers: UCL European Institute

Venue: School of Public Policy Council Room, Rubin Building, 29-30 Tavistock Square,
London WC1H 9QU


‘The Impact of Austerity and Structural Reforms on the Accessibility of Tribunal Justice’

Date: 11 May 2012, 9:30-16:30

Organisers: Ellie Palmer & Tom Cornford, Essex Law School

Venue: Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Charles Clore House, Council Chamber, 17 Russell Square London WC1B 5DR

Access to justice in an age of austerity: Time for proportionate responses

ESRC Seminar Series 2012-2013




‘The Right to Work: Legal and Philosophical Perspectives

Date: 25 May 2012, 09:00-17:30

Organisers: UCL Human Rights Institute

Venue: UCL Laws, Bentham House, Endsleigh Gardens, WC1H 0EG

For more info, please contact


‘Taking the Right Steps – Children’s Rights: Wales and the World’

Date: 11/12 June 2012

Venue: Swansea University,

Organisers: School of Law, Swansea University

In May 2012 the Children and Young Persons Rights Measure will come into effect in Wales. The Measure (primary legislation in Wales) is intended to give legislative effect to the UNCRC. The Conference will provide an opportunity to consider the likely impact of the Measure for children’s rights and children’s services in Wales, and to highlight what Wales might learn from, or contribute to, other nations seeking to give effect to the UNCRC in domestic legislation.


‘Current Legal Issues Colloquium: Law & Global Health’

Date: 2-3 July 2012, 12:00-12:00

Organisers: Michael Freeman (UCL), Sarah Hawkes (UCL) & Belinda Bennett (Sydney).

Venue: UCL Laws Graduate Wing, 1-2 Endsleigh Street, London WC1H 0EG


A range of papers and presentations are available from the expert seminar on ‘New Horizons in Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Monitoring’ which was held in Madrid on 22-23 March 2012:

Short podcasts featuring participants on a range of ESR-related topics can be found at:


New podcasts of speaker presentations from the COMPAS Seminar Series on ‘Migrants and Welfare States: Inclusion or Exclusion?’ have become available at:




General Information

Latest Edition of ESCR-Justice: Monthly Caselaw Update:


Latest Edition of INTERIGHT’S CommonwealthNet: CommonwealthNet is INTERIGHTS’ free monthly information service on the latest human rights decisions in the Commonwealth and common law jurisdictions, providing a concise round-up of judicial decisions in cases raising significant human rights issues in the common law world, with links given to full-text decisions.








Yordonova & Ors v Bulgaria, App. No.25446/06, 24 April 2012, European Court of Human Rights

The ECtHR found that the threatened forcible eviction of a Roma ‘shanty town’ by the relevant municipal authority was a breach of the European Convention on Human Rights. Here, the Court discussed in detail the question of ‘proportionality’ in the context of evictions. In doing so, it highlighted issues such as the existence of a community and the length of occupation. While reiterating that Article 8 does not give a right to be provided with a home, the court stated that: ‘an obligation to secure shelter to particularly vulnerable individuals may flow from Article 8 of the Convention in exceptional cases’ (para 130).

For a useful analysis of the decision, see:


Confédération française de l’Encadrement CFE-CGC v. France, Complaint No. 56/2009, 23 June 2010, European Committee of Social Rights

Here the applicant alleged that provisions of Act No. 2008-789 of 20 August 2008, on the reform of social democracy and working time, failed to comply with Articles 1§1, 2§1, 3, 4§2, as well as Article E combined with Articles 20 (c) and 27§1 of the Revised European Social Charter. The Committee found a violation of Article 2§1 (the right to reasonable working hours) on the ground of the excessive length of weekly working time permitted and the absence of adequate guarantees under the annual working days system. It also found a violation of Article 4§2 (right to fair remuneration) on the ground of the remuneration of overtime work. The decision is most notable for the Committee’s consideration of the relationship between the ESC and EU Law, with the Committee considering and rejecting a presumption of conformity of European Union Law with the ESC. (See paras 29-40)




HCJ 10662/04 Hasan v The National Insurance Institute, 28 February 2012, Supreme Court of Israel

Here, the claimant sought the abolition of a legal provision establishing the supplementary income should not be to paid to a person who owns or uses a vehicle. The Court accepted the petition, on the grounds that the law failed to meet the second test of proportionality, in that it established
an absolute assumption that any person who has a vehicle was ineligible for the benefit. Instead, it would have been possible to use a less injurious means, such as a detailed examination of each person claiming the benefit, allowing them to prove that, despite the use of a vehicle, they did not have sufficient means for livelihood. In their judgments, a number of judges made statements rejecting the existence of a sharp and clear distinction between social rights and political rights, and highlighting their interdependence.

The case is not yet available in English. It usually
takes 6 months before an official translation becomes available


U 466/11‐18 U 1836/11‐13, 14 March 2012, Constitutional Court of Austria

The Austrian Constitutional Court ruled that the country’s laws must not only conform to its own constitution but also to the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights in order to be upheld as constitutional, except for areas in which the EU does not legislate. The court also said the EU charter will be used in deciding disputes between private individuals.

Judgment in German available at:


Petition No. 409 of 2009, 20 April 2012, High Court of Kenya

The High court found the Kenya Anti-Counterfeit Act 2008 had failed to clearly distinguish between counterfeit and generic medicines. The Court ruled that ‘the fundamental right to life, human dignity and health as protected and envisaged by Articles 26(1), 28 and 43(1) of the Constitution encompasses access to affordable and essential drugs and medicines including generic drugs and medicines’.



Morobe Provincial Government v Kameku [2012] PGSC 2; SC11641 March 2012, Papua New Guinea Supreme Court

An eviction order, which gave settlers 30 days to vacate government land that they had lived and worked on without objection for 50 years, was held to be an unconstitutional act in terms of Section 41 of the Constitution as it was harsh, oppressive and not reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.
(Info taken from Interights Commonwealthnet, March edition)

Full text at




Williams & Anor, R (on the application of)v Surrey County Council [2012] EWHC 867 (QB), 3 April 2012, England & Wales High Court

The claimants challenged the decision of a local authority to close library facilities on the basis that, it had failed to comply with the Public Sector Equality Duty in Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010. The Court held that the local authority had failed to comply with the duty in question and that this rendered their decision unlawful.


R (On the Application of Almeida) v Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea [2012] EWHC 1082 (Admin), 27 April 2012, England & Wales High Court

The Administrative Court declared the applicant’s possible repatriation to Portugal and the refusal of a London Council to provide him with necessary accommodation and support under s.21 National Assistance Act 1948 breached his rights under Article 3 and Article 8 ECHR. Here the applicant was a Portuguese national who had become ill with HIV and hepatitis after living in the UK for several years.




The Scottish Equal Opportunities Committee has launched a call for evidence for its inquiry into Gypsy/Traveller accommodation. Evidence is sought on a range of ESR-related issues affecting travellers. Deadline for submissions is 13 July 2012





Legislation and Guidelines


The Social Welfare Act and Pensions Act 2012 (Act No.12 of 2012) was signed into law by the Irish President on 1 May. While the Bill has received relatively little attention compared to the UK Welfare Reform Act, it contains a range of measures that may have both positive and negative effects in terms of ESR enjoyment. One particular negative aspect that has been highlighted is the cessation of payment of the One Parent Family Payment to lone parents once their child reaches the age of 7. The final version of the Act will be available at:


Invitations to Tender/Jobs/Studentships


The Government is looking to appoint a new member and alternate member to the management board of the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency. For more info, see:

(Deadline 21 May 2012)




Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, The Annual Report of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights 2011 (Washington: IACHR, 2012).

The report addresses the Commission’s work in relation to a variety of ESR issues, including women’s rights, children’s rights and the rights of migrant workers and their families.
Amnesty International Scotland, ‘On the margins. Local authority service provision for Scottish Gypsy Travellers’ (Edinburgh: Amnesty International, 2012)

The report focuses on a range of aspects of the right to adequate housing of Scottish Gypsy Travellers.


Department for Communities and Local Government, Progress Report by the Ministerial Working Group on Tackling Inequalities Experienced by Gypsies and Travellers (London: DCLG, April 2012)

The report contains 28 commitments from across Government directed towards helping ‘mainstream services work better with Gypsies and Travellers’. These relate to areas such as housing, education, work and health.


G. Horgan & M. Monteith, A Child Rights Impact Assessment of the Impact of Welfare Reform on Children in Northern Ireland

The reports assess the impact of forthcoming welfare reform proposals on children in Northern Ireland, and explore the potential for the Northern Ireland Executive to adapt the ‘reforms’ to better protect children’s best interests. In particular, the report highlights issues relating to the rights to adequate housing and an adequate standard of living, as well as the rights of children with disabilities.


Office of the Children’s Commissioner for England published ‘Children and Equality — Equality evidence relating to children and young people in England’ (London: OCC, 2012)

The report’s findings address a range of children’s ESR, including those relating to education and health.


European Network Against Racism, ‘Roma Inclusion: A Progressive and Rights-Based Approach’, General Policy Paper No. 7, (Brussels: ENAR, 2012)


O. De Schutter (European Network of Legal Experts in the non-discrimination field), The Prohibition of Discrimination under European Human Rights Law: Relevance for the EU Non-discrimination Directives — An Update (Luxembourg: European Commission, 2012)

The report considers European human rights law (ECHR/Social Charter) protection from discrimination which could influence the outstanding questions of interpretation of Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 June 2000 implementing the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin and Directive 2000/78/EC of 27 November 2000 establishing a general framework for equal treatment in employment and occupation, as well as the proposed Directive on implementing the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation


Rory O’Connell, ‘Austerity and the ECHR, Rights NI Blog


Latest Edition of OHCHR ESCR Bulletin:

The OHCHR ESCR Bulletin provides updates on economic, social and cultural rights for OHCHR staff working in the field and at Headquarters. Issued every two months, this Bulletin aims at sharing news, activities, key events and new resources relevant to economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR).


Latest Edition of ESCR-Net Newsletter:


Latest Edition of Equality and Diversity Forum Newsletter: The EDF Newsletter contains information about new equality and human rights developments, policy and publications, as well as details of forthcoming events and job vacancies.




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